The municipal elections in France resulted in a huge victory for the Front National of Marine Le Pen. For the first time since 1995, France will again have FN mayors. Marine Le Pen also succeeded in maneuvering her party into pole position for the European elections on May 25th. France has 74 seats in the European Parliament. FN is expected to win up to 20 or more.
Marine Le Pen is one of Europe's greatest political talents. Her strategy to rid the party, which she inherited from her anti-Semitic father, from most of its extreme-right elements is paying off. While Le Pen's international policies are dangerously flawed and her economic proposals border on socialist protectionism, she has succeeded in turning the FN into an acceptable alternative for millions of ordinary Frenchmen from the Left as well as the Right.
Le Pen has also cleverly avoided making any political mistakes. She did not give in to provocations of political opponents and she did not fall into the trap of giving her enemies opportunities to reinforce hostile perceptions about her party.